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Category: Google+

Have a Whale of an Online Presence

[stag_intro]One of my good friends, who is also now a co-worker at Sanford, started up a company a few years ago dedicated to helping non-profits break through the idea that non-profit online presences can’t be any better than mediocre. She is a brilliant strategist who has big company know how that can fit into a small company budget.  She’s basically amazing. Her company Beluga Social has some fantastic resources that I wanted to share with ya’ll![/stag_intro]

[stag_divider style=”plain”]1. Website Review Worksheet

I love this resource because it’s easy to digest, yet chock full of great nuggets of easy to implement action items. Some of my favs include:

  • Your domain name makes sense?
  • Is your mission on your site?
  • Is it easy to figure out how to contact your organization?

[stag_button url=”” style=”purple” size=”large” type=”round” target=”_blank”]Beluga’s Non-Profit Website Review Worksheet[/stag_button]

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2. Blog Review Worksheet

Again – simple, easy to digest, brilliant checklist of what to do and how to measure. From the basics to analyzing your blog to make sure you’re reaching your audience, this one-pager will bring your blog to the next level. While some of the things might seem simple or ‘duh’, both Margot and I have come across too many non-profits that are failing when it comes to their blogs. Fav things:

  • Is your logo on the blog?
  • Updated on a regular basis.
  • Linked to Google Analytics.

[stag_button url=”” style=”purple” size=”large” type=”round” target=”_self”]Beluga’s Non-Profit Blog Review[/stag_button]

[stag_divider style=”plain”]3. Social Media Strategy Worksheet

Margot and I love social, like we really love social. While it looks high level, this worksheet is incredibly comprehensive and is one that I used to start our enterprise social strategy which (in my mind) shows the versatility, elasticity, and overall adaptability of this worksheet. Fav things:

  • Describing your audience segments.
  • How will you integrate into other types of communication?
  • What does success look like?

[stag_button url=”” style=”purple” size=”large” type=”round” target=”_self”]Beluga’s Social Media Strategy Worksheet[/stag_button]

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Like I said earlier, she’s great! Check out her company Beluga Social, but don’t bug her too much – she’s planning a wedding!


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[stag_one_third] Margot’s Twitter



@SanfordMargot [/stag_one_third]

[stag_one_third] Margot’s LinkedIn

Connect Here [/stag_one_third]

[stag_one_third_last] Margot’s Facebook

Beluga Social [/stag_one_third_last]

Max’s (Social) Fab Four

I get asked all the time from both business owners and non-profits, “what social networks should I be on?” I always give the same answer, “it all depends on what your strategy is!” And while I am a firm believer that I’m absolutely correct in starting with strategy before tactics, I do want to share my favorite or ‘fab’ four of social networks.  These magically seem to fit into almost any strategy I’ve developed and executed.

Ok – stop gabbing. Where should I be?

1. Facebook

One of my favorite networks is also one that I spend a lot of time perusing. What makes Facebook make my fab four? So far in the world of digital, it seems to be one of the only networks that has transcended the lifespan of the typical social site.  If social networks had a lifespan, Facebook would be your great granny – that’s still kickin’ strong! One of the most exciting things (for me) is Facebook’s continual growth in a time when the latest niche social platform is birthing and dying.

2. LinkedIn

Are you a professional or want to become one? Then you should be on LinkedIn. It’s really as easy as that. Get the idea out of your head that you should only be on LinkedIn when you’re looking for a job. Learn more about why your ass needs to be on LinkedIn by checking out my blog post from June here >>

3. Twitter

As my papa was ramping up his and his school’s social footprints, he was doing an interview with his local radio station.  At the end of the interview papa Jon told the listeners they could follow him for updates on sports scores, school closings, and everyday happenings. The DJ replied “Twitter? I thought that was just to tell people what kinda sandwich you ate at lunch.” If you’re reading this, I think you know it’s not just for telling what you had for lunch. After all, you can tweet about #JuanPablo and this season of #TheBachelor.

4. Google+

I’m a cheater when it comes to Google+.  I use it as an aggregator for my LinkedIn and Facebook content. But you and I both know that Google is taking over the world – so we might as well be early adopters. Again – learn more on why in my post from November >>

Ok that’s the breakdown of my fab four. High level? Yes.  True? Yes. Boom.


Max’s Social Marketing Advent Calendar – Reflection

December 29: Love Google.

You may think it’s an evil empire, but in reality they’re changing the world for the better. Check out this blog post to see more reasons to love Uncle Googs.

December 30: Go stead with Pinterest.

Make sure you’ve converted your business Pinterest to an official page. Why wouldn’t you? Unless you have no access to your company’s website.  (guilty)

December 31. Reflect.

How was your year in social? What were your ups and downs.  Wins? Document the shit out of them and hand them to your boss man/boss lady and their boss too.  Make sure everyone knows how awesome you really are. Good luck and happy new year.


Max’s Social Marketing Advent Calendar – Celebrate Connection

December 23: Connect every day.

Connect with new people every day/every week/every month with people on LinkedIn.

December 24: Subscribe.

You love YouTube.  Admit it.  Go ahead and subscribe to their channel.  Its amazing how many will reciprocate.

December 25: Celebrate!

Get yo’ ass off this machine and go celebrate with your family/friends/bottle of Malbec.

December 26: Follow that company.

Follow companies similar to yours or where you want to be.

December 27:  Be timely.

Dont schedule old news when theres new news.  Or take it off the schedule if it becomes old!

December 28: Cover your ass.

See my blog on covering your assets. It’s a good read.


Max’s Social Marketing Advent Calendar – Goal Oriented

December 16: If it ain’t on Google, it don’t exists.

Your welcome for the grammar lesson! Make sure your business/organization/you are on the Googles. If you have a business or organization, make sure you claim the location are your own.  You don’t want someone else posting about how awesome you are without your control, right? errr.

December 17: Claim all ‘dat social.

Even if you have no intention of using Snapchat for social promotion, grab you/your org’s username.

December 18: Measure.

For the love of all that is holy, if you’re not on Google Analytics, get on it. I’ve heard people tell me that their hosting provider provides numbers.  Just use GA. You’ll thank me later.

December 19: Aggregate like a b.

You don’t need to figure out new content for everything you do.  Create one kick ass piece of content and then use it to create 10-20 different social posts.

December 20: Get yo’ goals.

Figure out your goals for next year.  Make them measurable and make them kick ass.

December 21: Where the people are.

Make sure you’re where your customers are.  If your target audience is 14 year olds, LinkedIn isn’t the network for you.  Get where your people are.

December 22: Write.

Write a new blog post each week at the minimum and then share it through all your channels.

Max’s Social Marketing Advent Calendar – We’re all a-Twitter

December 9: Make the birdie happy.

Create sharable content if you want to be retweeted. My rule is 110 characters or less for optimization.  This gives room for either a short comment or a quoted retweet.

December 10: Just ask.

If you want people to retweet, just ask for it. Duh.

December 11: Give credit.

Don’t pretend like you curated a bunch of content when you didn’t. Call out the author or original tweeter.  This is easier said than done and I’m guilty often.

December 12: TBFFL.

What the hell is TBFFL? Twitter Best Friends for Life. Make friends on Twitter. Interact and respond to tweets regularly and it’s amazing the types of relationships you can create in the Twittersphere.  I got my first big kid job from it.

December 13: Get interested.

Unless you’re fortunate enough to have 30k followers within your first 10 minutes of tweeting, get to know your followers by checking out their blogs.  A little ego boosting goes a long way.

December 14: Give thanks.

Thank new followers publicly.  Only if you actually like they’re following you.

December 15: 140 characters? Wtf.

Instead of a limit, think of it as a challenge.  It’s called a microblog for a reason.


Max’s Social Marketing Advent Calendar – Just Be

December 1: Be a good member of the community.

Promote others content even more than you promote your own.  #GoldenRule.  By linking and lifting others up, you not only build your own credibility but expand your network.

December 2: Be shareable.

Be creative, funny, polarizing, whatever word you want to insert.  Share content that people want to share themselves. Funny and cats always win though.

December 3: Don’t spam.

How often do you post? Post every day, week, couple weeks, just be consistent and put out good solid content.

December 4: You do email marketing? Super!

But don’t just send out your own content.  You and your company may be awesome, but chances are they aren’t the end all be all of your industry.  Lift up others and you’ll be lifted too.

December 5: One more thing on email.

Send out educational/informational/fun pieces in addition to your promotions.  As soon as people think your email is strictly to sell, they won’t open anymore.  That last one is based on nothing but my own habits.

December 6: Quality vesus quantity.

If you don’t have enough quality things to say to keep your social feeds full, well you must be pretty uninteresting.  Sorry bout it.

December 7: 20+ Times per day.

That’s a lot of freikin’ tweets, but is commonly said to be an optimal amount of tweets. Instead use my favorite rule 1-2-3.  1 Unique Tweet, 2 Call-Outs (thank you, recent visits, etc.) and 3 Retweets. Easy peasy. And if you’re starting out, maybe do 6 tweets for the week. I try to use this per day.

December 8: It’s good to be popular.

I just discovered this one, but if you/your organization are flexible enough to base content on what’s hot right now, check out Google’s Hot Search:

Non-Profit Content Strategy Matrix

What do small non-profits lack when it comes to a solid social media strategy? Passion, inspiration, a dedicated audiences – nope. Time, money, resources – yes.

So I put together this little matrix to break down the simplest, highest level social strategy through three steps. It’s simple to use and can drive your content strategy.  Start with the top line.  What do you want to do? Inspire your audience? Listen to customers? Engage enthusiastic constituents? Use these high level starting points to drive your social content. Then simply cross it with: Why are you doing this? How are you doing this? And what should be the outcome.

It’s simple, its high level, but enjoy and good luck!

Non Profit Social Matrix

If you want to learn more about social media strategy for non-profits, check out my Slideshare and follow me on Twitter.

Google is for Lovers – Lovers of Social and SEO.

SEO is a hot buzzword right now that you’ll hear especially from those trying to sell you web services. SEO is Search Engine Optimization and is in reference to making sure your online presences are getting in front of the people searching for your products or services.

Recently social has become a key component in search rankings. Searchmetrics recently released a study about what factors are the most important when it comes to where your company lands on the magical Googles.

My number one recommendation when it comes to SEO (even before social) is that content is king. The content that will drive your social posts need to have substance that people want to interact with and share. Here are the networks that have the best chance to affect your SEO.

1. Google+

Google loves itself and why wouldn’t it? It’s kinda awesome. Without even thinking about it, people default to Google so it’s important to play nice with their social network.
With a ‘pinboard’ style profile pages, Google+ is made to be visual so don’t be afraid of it! Do you need to create brand new content just for the googs? Nah! Just aggregate your Facebook content there – speaking of!

2. Facebook

One of the top factors in SEO rankings is the big blue giant – Facebook. Make sure you’re aggregating your knowledge base, quick tips, blog posts etc. Make it visual and make it entertaining. In order to make sure that your SEO is being affected, you need to drive engagement – likes, shares, etc.

3. LinkedIn

Make it do double duty – while you’re building your professional network, you can also share all of your content that you’re already sharing via Google+, Facebook and Twitter. Linking back to content on your website and your blog will do wonders for your rankings and because it’s a professional network, Google trusts them!

It’s time for social to be a key component of your SEO strategy and using these networks will make sure you get in front of your customers and prospects.